Wednesday, May 26th, was technically the second day of BEA. However, it was my first day in attendance, as that is when the actual exhibit floor opened.
Arriving at BEA for the first time was completely overwhelming. There were people and books everywhere, everyone ready to flood the exhibit floor. As soon as they opened the floor, everyone rushed amongst the booths in search of books and swag. And let me just tell you, these booths were amazing. I had not been expecting such impressive booths from the publisher. The HarperCollins booth, for example, was more like being in their office than in a convention. They had light boxes of their upcoming books' covers, desks, and little cafe tables for meetings. Likewise, Random House and Penguin had equally impressive and colorful booths. I was blown away by how nice they all were!
The first half of the day was a mad rush for ARCs. By mid-afternoon I'd already filled up two BEA bags, and had to ship them home. Relieved of the heavy book-filled bags, I headed off to the Harlequin Young Adult hour at noon, which was completely insane. I don't think the people at the booth had been prepared for the tidal wave of YA lovers who flocked to the signing. While waiting in the mob of a line, I met three lovely moderators from TwilightSeriesTheories.com. The Twilight Girls, as my mother nicknamed them, were incredibly sweet, and we ended up chatting for a good half hour while in line. (Everyone should go check out their new book blog Bookshelf Banter!)
After the crazy Harlequin signing, I went around to more booths and signings, amassing more pretty, pretty books. At three o'clock I hightailed it over to the Little Brown booth, where they were going to be passing out Beautiful Darkness ARCs at four. There was already a line forming by the time I arrived, and I ended up running into the lovely Twilight Girls once again.
One thing I learned at BEA: lines can be fun. They're especially fun when it's a line of book lovers. Even though we were all an hour early, we had so much fun "networking" and discussing books that the time flew by. When four o'clock rolled around I'd met tons of great people, and collected loads of business cards for wonderful blogs.
In addition to the Twilight Girls, I also met Mitali from Alley of Books, Erica from The Book Cellar, Bree Despain, Kristi from The Story Siren, Chelsea from The Page Flipper (whose book, Rae, had a big light box display!), and many more.